Category Archives: On my table

A new batch of dolls has been adopted!

It’s time to make dolls! I got the urge to get my doll making materials and create something!

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As always, everything starts with an idea. I work on my sketchbooks and then I go back to them to get the best ideas for my new girls, and I start making the bodies using the same techniques I use in my online class, “A Doll Story”

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While I am making the bodies, I use paper clay to sculpt the faces, and I carve the facial features after the initial shape of the head is setup.

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Then, it’s time to paint the faces! Using the mixed media materials like pencils, pastels, acrylics and oils that I always use on my paintings, I create beautiful faces on their heads, with eyes and a soul within them.

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Layer upon layer of acrylic paint, pastels, pencils and oil paintings are used to create the beautiful shine I give to my doll’s eyes. When you gaze into their eyes, you can be sure that a little piece of me and my memories lives in each one of them.

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It’s time to let them dry, so I go ahead and I start designing their clothes using my collection of fabrics I have collected over the year on my visits to thrifty stores and other unusual places.

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After the heads are dry, I start making their arms and legs using the techniques you have learned from my online doll making class, “A doll story

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And as I attach the arms and legs, I take the fabrics I selected for the dresses and start to create personalities for each one of them, thinking about how they want to look and what colors will suit them best.

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Another thing I do is attach porcelain arms and feet as I attach the arms. I bought vintage molds to create the arms and legs and I pour each arm and leg using liquid clay and porcelain in my studio ahead of time so I always have a batch of arms and legs to use whenever inspiration strikes.

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Finally it’s time to start dressing them up! I design, cut and sew each one of their clothes and sometimes I create several layers of clothes for them. Like this girl, who will have very fluffy underpants to wear beneath her handmade skirt.

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Final details on their clothes like hand painting their boots are next, and those little details are, to me, the most important details that will give the doll a real life and personality.

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But something is still missing…. They are bold! So, it’s time to pick up 100% natural wool and give them hair on their heads.

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So much to choose from! I have to decide on a color, and a style, and a hairdo. Lots of work but finally, each one of them tell me how she wants to look.

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After all that work, they are almost done! It’s a matter of giving them accessories and to start preparing the boxes they will live in.

And then, the final step is to send them to my photo studio, where they get their final photos and they are ready to be adopted!

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Pauline

(Adopted!)

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Darlene

(Adopted!)

Elouise, a beautiful art doll in paper clay and fabric created by Danita.

Elouise

(Adopted!)

 

I hope you enjoyed this look at the process of making these beautiful art dolls, they are a lot of work, but for me, it’s worth every second I spend making them. Bringing them to life from raw materials fills me with an incredible joy and happiness.

And I want to thank you, because as I was typing this post, all of them got adopted. They are very happy to have found a forever home, and I know they will be loved when they arrive to their families.

Mini Art dolls for your holidays

Every year I make a series of little wood kokeshi dolls to celebrate the coming of winter and the nice holidays ahead.

This year is no exception! I took my kokeshi blanks and set to work on this year’s collection.

It all begins with sketches for the ideas for the collections, sanding the wood dolls, priming with Golden Acrylic Gesso and then sanding again to give them a smooth finish to start.

 Next, I start working with Paperclay to create the details and personality of each of the dolls by sculpting and creating ears, noses, fur and beards with my Tool set.

By now, I pretty much know what each doll wants to be, and I will help it become just that with my hands.


Then, the painting begins! I like to use Golden Fluid Acrylics and Blick matte paints because they are perfect for the little details and they have great pigmentation and lightfastness, so your dolls will stay colorful for a long time, it’s something the craft paints will not achieve so it’s best to stick with the good stuff.
A fine brush is a must for the little details like the eyes, there are lots of brands so you can use your favorite, just make sure it is up to the task for your work. Patience is the key here!

A lot of work goes in each of the dolls, I just want them to be perfect and I like to take my time with each one them, specially in their eyes. Without expressive eyes, they are just little toys.

After that, the accessories come in! I painted some wood trees with pastel colors for some, and I used vintage miniature ornaments from thrifty stores for others, and then I mounted them on a little wood base.


But they are not done yet! I am getting ready to apply German glass glitter on them to make them shiny and sparkly. They will look beautiful when you place them over the fireplace and you turn on the Christmas lights, they will reflect the light with a thousand little sparks and will really come to life!

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And after all the hard work, you have beautiful dolls to enjoy for the holiday season! All of them are adoptable, you can visit the official adoption page on my online gallery, danitaart.com and you can click on each image to go directly the detail page, where you can see more pictures and take one home. 🙂

_b213911Santa and his magic sled

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Peppermint girl

_b214134Santa’s little helper

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Rudolph the red nosed reindeer

_b214233Oh, Christmas tree!

_b214078Frosty the snowman

_b214543The queen of the north

_b214410The angel of creativity

_b214358The angel of love

_b214311The angel of peace

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The evolution of Alice

Every time I want to experiment and evolve, Alice in wonderland comes into view. There’s just something about Wonderland that entices me to create.

img_2811Everything always starts with a sketch from my sketchbooks, then I transfer it to a blank canvas that will be the home of my next creation.

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Blobs of color start appearing all over the space, defining shapes and deciding what will this painting will become.

Usually I only work on a painting at a time, but this time it just felt right. I wanted to test out new techniques to give my faces more depth and detail and working with both paintings together was just what I needed.

img_2819You can see that with time, the faces start getting more and more detail. By fusing and diffusing color strokes with my brushes I achieved a smooth, dreamy quality on their faces.

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But no face looks quite right without eyes, so that’s the next step. Adding the basic shapes to these new beautiful faces was a welcome challenge to my skills, and a lot of fun to make.

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Almost done here, the detail on their faces is deeper and smoother than my previous work. The faces have a more three dimensional appearance and they seem to jump off the canvas like they did not do before.

Alice falls trough the white rabbit's hole to wonderland on this acrylic painting by Danita Art
Tumble down the rabbit hole with with Alice in wonderland.

Alice tumbles down the rabbit hole on the finished painting, slowly floating down towards wonderland. [shopify embed_type=”product” shop=”danitaart.myshopify.com” product_handle=”freefall” show=”button-only”]

Alice and the caterpillar original acrylic painting by Danita Art
Adopt Alice and the caterpillar and travel with them on a journey towards wonderland.

And here is Alice and the caterpillar, she holds him with great care as she is ready to travel in wonderland with her new friend. [shopify embed_type=”product” shop=”danitaart.myshopify.com” product_handle=”alice-and-the-cartepillar” show=”button-only”]

So, what do you think of the style I used on them? Do you like where I am headed now? Let me know with a comment, I’d love to hear what you think!


Sharing the process

Lately, I’m getting obsessed with color pencils. I really love to see them ready to be used, all the different colors and textures really fuel my soul and I just want to get going and draw and paint.

And since I love it so much, I want to share part of the process with you. I love how the layers start to pile up and then out of the sudden, a beautiful image appears out of nowhere.

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And then, it’s not only color pencils. I found some soft pastels in pencil form and I had a ton of fun with them! Just see the result of working them over a shabby metal frame I found.

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It’s starting to look a little different than my usual whimsical art, but I really like where this new artistic direction is taking me. What do you think, do you like what you see?

Let me know in the comments!

It always starts with an idea.

Have you seen my latest art dolls? I played with the woodlands theme to make a little collection of art dolls to play with while they are adopted from my official gallery store. You can adopt a Bunny, A fox, an owl, a Bear or a little girl.

Would you like to learn more about the process from start to finish?

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Everything, no matter how simple of complex of an art project, it always starts with an idea. Mine always begin in my sketchbooks. That’s where I pour everything that comes into my mind at a given time of day, so I record it to use it later when I need an idea to start working.

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I had these dolls blanks for a long time, waiting for one of my art attacks to give them life. And I’m so glad I had them because now that Autumn is creeping in, I felt the need to create something about the woodlands, specially after looking at one of my favorite books, “Where the wild things are” and I got an idea after looking at the kid in his pajamas.

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So I set up to work. I got my needle felting tools and after an afternoon of hard work and pricked fingers, the dolls started to take shape. Furry forest critters that will inhabit the vast woodlands of Danitaland.

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It really is a lot of work, slowly felting the wool into the fabric stuffed bodies, specially when I injured my left hand and now I am basically working single handed. but I kept on going and progress really started to show.

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Once done with the rough work, it’s time to create the details of each of the dolls. The little girl has a pine tree brooch holding her cape.

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And each of the little furry animals has a fluffy cottony tail in their cute behinds.

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And then, it’s time for details! I pick up a pencil and start drawing their faces. Mouths and eyes first and then the sketch of their beautiful, sparkly living eyes.

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Someone told once that I am very brave because I make the dolls first and then I make the faces, knowing that if I make a mistake the doll will be no good. But that does not stop me at all. I’ve always thought of making the body first because once I see it, I know what face will the doll have.

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And just like that, they are lining up ready to get their beautiful faces detailed with paint and mixed media materials to give them the final touch.

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After all the hard work, they are ready! Fluffy furry bodies ready, lively eyes painted and it’s time for their formal photoshoot to get them ready for adoption!

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I really had a blast with them, it was a lot of fun to pose them and then play with them, having tons of adventures on my clover forest here in my backyard.

It was so much fun indeed that my photographer had to remind me that we were there to actually take pictures, not to play. But in the end no one can resist them and we ended up playing with them a bit before wrapping up the photo session.

And now, here they are, ready for adoption on my official website and my Etsy store.

Click on your favorite to see more images of them, and you can adopt them right away!

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A little pain won’t stop me

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You know I got hurt last week and I’m having to wear a very ugly brace on my hand that prevents me from moving it, but that is not going to stop me from creating!

I found these little dolls on my blank doll bag and I decided that brace or no brace, pain or no pain, the art must go on.

I’m working basically one handed, so I am much slower than I want, but I’m committed to doing this. Stay tuned because new cute dolls are coming soon.